Spinach, a nutrient-rich leafy green vegetable, is known for its highly nutritious profile. Filled with essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, spinach has become a popular ingredient in health-conscious diets. However, concerns have been raised about the potential link between consuming spinach in the form of juices and smoothies and the development of kidney stones. Let’s learn the side effects of spinach and how it can lead to kidney stones.
Ayurveda and gut health coach Dr Dimple Jangda recently shared an Instagram Reel in which she warned everyone against excessive consumption of spinach smoothies and spinach juice as they can lead to stones renal. Here is the reason.
Can spinach juice cause kidney stones?
“Spinach is a source of iron, but it also contains a compound called oxalate, which is very difficult for the body to absorb and assimilate. So today it is one of the main causes of kidney stone formation and even gallbladder stones,” explains Dr. Jangda.
Jangda added: “A single glass of spinach juice or a spinach smoothie is equivalent to eight to ten times the oxalate compound that your body can possibly handle. This compound binds to calcium in your body, leading to the formation of calcified stones in the kidneys and gallbladder.
Side Effects of Eating Too Much Spinach
Eating spinach is generally considered a healthy choice due to its many nutritional benefits. However, due to its oxalate compound, excessive consumption or certain conditions may lead to potential side effects. Here are 4 side effects associated with eating spinach:
1. Gastrointestinal problems
Spinach is high in fiber, which can benefit digestion in moderate amounts. However, says Dr. Jangda: “Excessive fiber consumption in the form of spinach can cause indigestion, bloating, gas, flatulence, constipation, diarrhea, and irritable bowel syndrome, especially in women. people with sensitive digestive systems.
Check out his Instagram post:
2. Interference with mineral absorption
Spinach contains compounds like phytates that can hinder the absorption of essential minerals like iron, calcium and zinc. This is of concern for people at risk of mineral deficiencies or people with poor nutrient absorption.
3. Disturbance of thyroid function
Spinach contains goitrogens, natural substances that can interfere with the normal functioning of the thyroid gland. In large amounts, goitrogens can interfere with iodine absorption, potentially affecting thyroid hormone production.
4. Allergic reactions
Some people may be allergic to spinach and experience symptoms such as itching, hives, or difficulty breathing. It is essential to watch for any allergic reactions after consuming spinach.
Spinach is a very nutritious vegetable when consumed in moderation as part of a balanced diet, but it is advisable to consult a healthcare professional for appropriate spinach intake.
How to cook spinach?
According to Jangda, “It is strongly advised to refrain from consuming spinach juice or smoothies, even if someone suggests it. Instead, opt to boil or blanch the spinach. Research indicates that these cooking methods can significantly reduce oxalate levels by about 30 to 87 percent. Once boiled or blanched, you can use spinach to make a delicious vegetable side dish in curry or paste form or incorporate it into a nourishing soup.